Mr. HUANG (Lester, Chairman of SCOLAR), Professor CHENG (Kai-ming, Former Chairman of SCOLAR), Distinguished Guests, Members of SCOLAR, ladies and gentlemen:
Good morning. It gives me great pleasure to join you all today at the 25th Anniversary Conference of the Standing Committee on Language Education and Research (SCOLAR). Let me first extend my warmest congratulations to SCOLAR on this special milestone celebrating its 25th anniversary of founding.
Language competencies are invaluable assets cherished by all, with far-reaching implications on both individuals’ personal growth and the society’s sustainable development. It is with this belief in mind that the Government has all along been making determined strides in enabling the people in Hong Kong to become biliterate (in written Chinese and English) and trilingual (in Cantonese, Putonghua, and spoken English). This has been a distinct and thriving feature of our language education in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.
To realise the vision as said, much has been done by the Education Bureau to facilitate students’ language learning. In tandem, SCOLAR has committed itself to complementing the effort of the Government in enhancing language education since its establishment in 1996. Over the past 25 years, with the use of the Language Fund, SCOLAR has launched and implemented an array of initiatives in promoting language education. On this note, I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to the incumbent and former Chairmen of SCOLAR as well as Members for their dedication and support rendered. In particular, as the current term of SCOLAR will soon draw to a close this month, I would like to take the opportunity to sincerely thank Lester for his able leadership in the past six years. His dedication to the work of SCOLAR on language education is highly appreciated. Looking forward, may I also welcome Dr Anissa CHAN, who will succeed Lester as the Chairperson of SCOLAR starting from July with her strong expertise and leading experience in education.
I would also like to thank our Distinguished Guests and practitioners from across the education sector, parents and students for the concerted effort all along and your participation in this Conference, which marks a special occasion for SCOLAR. I am also particularly pleased to welcome the students who are present here today for receiving awards in our Social Media Video Contest –“Be the next star KOL”. The Contest was co-run by the Education Bureau and SCOLAR and it aimed at promoting innovation in language learning and teaching. I look forward to meeting the awardees who stood out among 1 700 students in the Contest later this morning.
In closing, a good mastery of Chinese and English does not only facilitate individuals’ intellectual development, academic achievements as well as career prospects, but it is also a central pillar in maintaining Hong Kong’s competitive edge as a forward-thinking, knowledge-based society for further growth and innovation. Let us work hand-in-hand together to bring Hong Kong’s language education to new heights! Thank you.